Audiences across Cayman enjoy Gimistory

Gimistory, the Cayman Islands International Storytelling Festival had a successful 2006 run from both a performance and attendance perspective, a press release said.

For a second consecutive year the festival opened with an all Cayman line-up of storytellers hosted by our own ‘Ma Story’ Aunty D otherwise known as Devine Bush.

The Cayman National Cultural Foundation production opened to overflowing crowds at the Dart Family Park in South Sound and closed to a standing-room only audience for the ‘Duppy Story Night’ at Smith Cove. The performers entertained capacity audiences throughout the run of festival.

Gimistory tellers performed in all districts of the Cayman Islands including Cayman Brac.

Besides the public performances Gimistory tellers were involved in a number of other activities. The storytellers performed at 20 different schools across the islands to the joy of thousands of school children. Even teachers benefited. Teachers were able to participate in a workshop which taught storytelling techniques that make it easier for young children to comprehend stories. The workshop was facilitated by Samantha Pierre who was Ma Story during the festival performances.

There was also a special performance Culture Meets Tourism at the home of CNCF Chairman, Martyn Bould. This performance was staged especially for stakeholders in the tourism industry to apprise them of the festival’s vast potential as a major tourism attraction.

Each show during the festival had a different combination of tellers. The performances ranged from Greek and Scottish stories to Anansi stories to stories in song and comedy skits. Audiences represented the full cross-section of Cayman’s population.

Storyteller Ken Corsbie who has performed at every Gimistory is very enthusiastic about the potential of Gimistory. Mr. Corsbie has performed at many such festivals in a number of countries and says he believes that Gimistory can realistically aim to be an internationally recognized storytelling festival capable of attracting visitors to Cayman.

CNCF Artistic Director Henry Muttoo said that he is generally pleased with this year’s festival. He says the festival continues to strengthen and that he is particularly encouraged by how the festival increasingly attracts all demographics of Cayman’s society. Mr. Muttoo said he is especially pleased to see even more children attending Gimistory than before. He said that while he considers the festival a success, not every aspect of the festival is at the desired artistic and technical levels and that he will work with the CNCF board, staff, and volunteers to have those weakness corrected for the 2007 Gimistory Festival.

Mr. Muttoo said he was especially grateful to all who helped make the festival a success.

‘Without the help of the community, be it volunteering, in kind or cash contributions, a free festival of this calibre could not take place,’ Mr. Muttoo said.

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